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Styron celebrates crowning moment

POULSBO — Jessica Styron had the crowd in stitches Saturday night as she hobbled down the aisle, dressed as an old woman and leaning on a cane.

“Viking Fest makes me feel like a kid again,” she told the crowd. She then stood up from her rocking chair and danced to James Brown’s “I Feel Good,” evoking laughter and cheers from the room.

Less than an hour later, Styron ditched the powdered wig for an evening gown and a crown as she was named Miss Viking Fest 2003.

Styron, a 17-year-old junior at North Kitsap High School and the daughter of Ken and Kathy Styron, was one of seven contestants at the 2003 Miss Viking Fest Pageant April 12. The contest is a scholarship opportunity offered by the Viking Fest Corporation, organizers of the annual Viking Fest event.

Megan Brose, a 17-year-old junior at NKHS and daughter of Mark and Karen Brose, and Ashley Ogle, a 17-year-old junior at NKHS and daughter of Charlie Ogle and Tammie Brigg, were named 2003 princesses.

Amid a country-western theme, contestants line-danced, modeled and showed their creativity as they vied for one of three crowns. Master of Ceremonies Kristen Oas, who was the first-ever Miss Viking Fest, said she was impressed with this year’s group of contestants.

“The seven young ladies hoping to be crowned Miss Viking Fest are some of North Kitsap’s finest,” Oas told the

crowd.

Competitions included interviews, impromptu questions and the much-awaited two-minute speeches. Each year, contestants are asked to write a short speech explaining and extolling the virtues of the Norwegian Constitution Day event.

Styron’s skit from the viewpoint of an old lady won her the Best Speech award, however, she was not alone in the creativity department.

Princess Brose donned a sailor suit and with an “Ahoy There” told of the crowd about the exciting event on the shores of Liberty Bay. As for her favorite part about the celebration, Brose made sure to mention, “The annual lutefisk eating contest, and that’s no ‘lye.’”

Another speech that got the crowd going involved contestant Toni Duchemin dressed half as a television reporter and half as a Norwegian fisherman, complete with yellow slicker and white beard. Her reporter half interviewed her fisherman half about Viking Fest, an interview that included plenty of “ya sures” and “you betchas.”

Behind the scenes, contestants were also scored on their academic performance, earlier interviews and community involvement.

Styron is involved in ASB, LEO Club, has been named to the honor roll and received the President’s Education Award at NKHS. Last year, she logged 113 hours of community service, including a penny drive for the Red Cross, Adopt A Family and school improvement days.

Brose is involved with volleyball and Leaders in North Kitsap (LINK) and has been named to the honor roll at NKHS. She also volunteers her time with the Bainbridge Island Helpline House and is a member of the Christ Memorial Church Homegroup leadership team.

Ogle is involved with snowboarding, soccer, Adopt A Family and has been named to the honor roll. She has been named MVP of the NKHS junior varsity soccer team.

Other awards given during the pageant were:

•“Coming Out of Her Shell” Director’s Award — Megan Brose

•Most Tickets Sold — Toni Duchemin

•Candy Sales — Crystal Henderson

•Best GPA — Jenne Jones

•Best Speech — Jessica Styron

•Miss Congeniality — Jessica Styron

Miss Viking Fest 2003 receives a $1,000 scholarship and each of the princesses received $500 scholarships. The trio will represent Poulsbo at Viking Fest, which is scheduled for May 16-18 at the Poulsbo waterfront, as well as other regional events throughout the year.

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